And experts predict that many
well-paying jobs will not require a four-year college degree.
But in order to qualify for those jobs, teens need to enter the workplace with skills and knowledge. They must have the ability to communicate ideas clearly. They need an understanding of mathematics at least through algebra and geometry. They must be able to solve problems.
What does that mean for the high school student who is not college-bound?
• First, these teens must take challenging courses, including higher-level math courses. In fact, according to Mary Agnes Ham-ilton and Stephen F. Hamilton, directors of the Cornell Youth and Work Program, “High school students hoping to have rewarding careers without graduating from four-year colleges must enroll in courses previously considered appropriate only for those bound for selective colleges.”
• Second, they need to make sure they have the technical skills—the ability to use a spreadsheet or to do word processing—that are the foundation of most jobs. Finally, they need to demonstrate good work habits—good attendance and the ability to work with others.
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